Fgf- and Bmp-signaling regulate gill regeneration in Ambystoma mexicanum

Nanami Saito, Koki Nishimura, Aki Makanae, Akira Satoh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


Gill regeneration has not been well studied compared to regeneration of other appendages, such as limb and tail regeneration. Here, we focused on axolotl gill regeneration and found that Fgf- and Bmp-signaling are involved in their gill regeneration mechanism. Axolotls have three pairs of gill rami, and each gill ramus has multiple gill filaments. The gills consist of mesenchyme rich in extracellular matrix and epidermis. The gill nerves are supplied from the trigeminal ganglia located in the head. Denervation resulted in no gill regeneration responses. Nerves and gills express Bmp and Fgf genes, and treating animals with Fgf- and Bmp-signaling inhibitors results in phenotypes similar to those seen in denervated gills. Inducing an accessory appendage is a standard assay in amphibian regeneration research. In our study, an accessory gill could be induced by lateral wounding, suggesting that thin axon fibers and mesenchymal Fgfs and Bmps contributed to the induction of the accessory structure. Such accessory gill induction was inhibited by the denervation. Exogenous Fgf2+Fgf8+Bmp7, which have been determined to function as a regeneration inducer in urodele amphibians, could compensate for the effects denervation has on accessory blastema formation. Our findings suggest that regeneration of appendages in axolotls is regulated by common Fgf- and Bmp-signaling cascades.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)104-113
Number of pages10
JournalDevelopmental Biology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Aug 15 2019


  • Blastema induction
  • Bmp
  • Fgf
  • Gill regeneration
  • Nerve
  • Organ regeneration

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Developmental Biology
  • Cell Biology


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